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Mushroom Muse

Updated: May 9, 2021

So during the first lock down of 2020 I was a student at Edinburgh College of Art in the mist of printing and making at the universtiy we were told to pack up our belongings at the university and stay at home. As a creator I became worried about how I was going to continue working without my studio and without being able to leave my flat! where would I find my inspiration. Feeling separated from the world and nature outside I decided to grow my own inspiration in my bedroom and bring the natural world inside with me. I decided to grow oyster mushrooms.

Each day I would place them by my bedroom window tantalisingly close to world outside, and document their change. I wanted to document something as an observer a female observer and in this way either through a choice of exposure angle or close up I give my female perspective through the lens. I used the female gaze to express not only how the mushrooms were growing and changing but also how I was feeling at that time.

I see the mushroom as a representation for my own self in this process, I think of this process as a way for me to express and depict how I am feeling through the lens of the camera.

The choice of using mushrooms to be the focus of the lens was inspired by the way they grow from complex mycelium channels under the earth, The mushroom is visible on the surface but there is so much going on below that we cannot see. This is how I feel about the way woman are often portrayed in media, they are depicted as being one dimensional, depicted object of desire and nothing more, I feel there is individualistic qualities and complexities that are being hidden behind this one dimensional front. Just like photographing these mushrooms for their beauty I also want to express a mystery to them in their mood, which is further investigated and expressed when these images are reproduced in print showing a different reality that cannot be seen.

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